Costa Rica's Supreme Court has struck
down the nation's ban on same-sex marriage, ruling it
unconstitutional and discriminatory.
The court gave legislators 18 months to
change the law.
President Carlos Alvarado Quesada
welcomed the ruling, saying that he wants to guarantee “no person
will face discrimination for their sexual orientation.”
Ricans reject presidential candidate who opposed same-sex marriage.)
Costa Rica is among the 23 countries to
adopt the American Convention of Human Rights, also known as the Pact
of San Jose. In January, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights,
which oversees compliance with the convention, said that member
countries had to extend marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples.
At a press conference held on
Wednesday, Supreme Court judge Fernando Castillo cited the opinion,
saying that Costa Rica's laws were inconsistent with the convention.
He also said that if lawmakers do not change the nation's marriage
laws to include gay couples, then the ban will end on its own.
Roughly a quarter of legislators are
Enrique Sanchez, Costa Rica's first
openly gay legislator, told the AFP that he does not believe the
assembly will comply with the court's request.